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Accessible Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter Mouton March 10, 2015

Creating quarter for doing things with language

Koen Jaspaert

Abstract

In this article I deal with language policy as it is aimed at changing the language practice of certain people within a group (Spolsky 2004). I will especially focus on instances of language policy that are meant to have an emancipatory function: policy is aimed at changing the language practice of some people in order for them to function in situations that are considered socially important. I start my account of successes and failures in language policy with an exploration of the concept of language. I will try to make clear that there are two concepts of language which are commonly used, and that these concepts differ from one another in the way the relation between variation and uniformity in language is seen. I will situate these concepts in Realist Social Theory (RST), and will go into the consequences of interpreting language from one of these angles for the effectiveness of language policy.

Samenvatting

In dit artikel ga ik in op taalbeleid als een middel om het taalgebruik te veranderen van bepaalde mensen die behoren tot een groep (Spolsy 2004). Ik richt me vooral op die vormen van taalpolitiek die een emancipatorische functie hebben: het gaat daarbij om beleid dat erop gericht is het taalgebruik van mensen te veranderen zodat zij kunnen functioneren in situaties die sociaal belangrijk geacht worden. Ik start mijn verslag van de successen en het falen van taalbeleid met een verkenning van het concept ‘taal’. Ik probeer duidelijk te maken dat er twee concepten zijn die allebei gebruikt worden, en dat die concepten van elkaar verschillen in de manier waarop met de relatie tussen variatie en uniformiteit in taal wordt omgegaan. Ik situeer die concepten in Realist Social Theory (RST), en behandel daarna de gevolgen van een taalbeleid dat bij een van deze concepten aansluit.

Zusammenfassung

In diesem Artikel bespreche ich die Sprachpolitik als Mittel um den Sprachgebrauch zu ändern von bestimmten Menschen, die zu einer Gruppe gehören (Spolsky 2004). Ich konzentriere mich vor allem auf diejenigen Formen der Sprachpolitik, die eine emanzipatorische Funktion haben: Dabei handelt es sich um Politik, die sich zum Ziel setzt, den Sprachgebrauch von Menschen zu ändern, sodass sie in als sozial wichtig betrachteten Situationen funktionieren könnten. Ich fange meinen Bericht über die Erfolge und das Versagen der Sprachpolitik mit einer Exploration des Konzepts ‚Sprache‘ an. Ich versuche deutlich zu machen, dass es zwei Konzepte gibt, die beide verwendet werden, und dass die Konzepte sich voneinander unterscheiden in der Weise, auf die mit der Beziehung zwischen Variation und Uniformität in der Sprache umgegangen wird. Ich ordne diese Konzepte in die Realist Social Theory (RST) ein, und behandle danach die Folgen einer Sprachpolitik, die sich einem dieser Konzepte anschließt.

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Published Online: 2015-3-10
Published in Print: 2015-3-1

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